For some time now, I've been thinking that my record player was due for an upgrade. My Linn LP12
turntable and Ittok LVII tonearm are about 25 years old, and my AudioQuest AQ7000nsx
cartridge is going on 15. During that time, my listening has become increasingly dominated by CDs, but I am not yet ready to give up on LPs. Updating my LP12for which I have Linn's Lingo
power supply but no other upgradeswould involve installing the Keel subchassis, for $3250for which price I could get another maker's new, current-design turntable and still have the LP12 to sell. The Linn Ittok can't be upgraded, and its replacement, the Ekos SE
, costs $4950out of my range. AudioQuest no longer makes cartridges. Examining my AQ7000nsx's stylus under a microscope showed no visible wear, and there was no obvious audible problem that could be traced to the cartridge's suspension, but age must be having some sort of effect. Taking all these factors into account, I decided to replace my entire phono front end.